Ford India, the domestic arm of American auto maker, is likely to bring its much awaited compact Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) EcoSport in the Indian auto market by the end of first quarter of next fiscal. Individual close to the development process was quoted as saying, “After completion of the campaign, the company will formally launch EcoSport in the Indian market. Most probably by June end it will be launched.”
It must be noted that the auto maker has already announced to launch a promotional campaign for its much hyped upcoming compact SUV in a couple of months. With this programme, the Ford India is planning to select 100 consumers who will be provided with a golden opportunity to get behind the wheels of the model before its actual launch. Confirming this statement, the President and Managing Director of Ford India, Joginder Singh said that the selection will be carried by a jury. In order to take part in this event, individuals are required to upload their views on the new launch of Ford India, which will be then evaluated by the judges.
Reportedly, this promotional campaign will be planned in 12 cities of the country, starting from National Capital and Mumbai, in a form of road show. In order to gather the attention of Indian audience, the American car maker has already inaugurated the EcoSport Urban Hub, which is luring the interest of several auto aficionados. He further added, “Consumers across these 12 cities will have an opportunity to see, touch and feel their EcoSport every weekend leading up to the launch. We have taken a step further by giving them an opportunity to drive and experience the EcoSport out in the open and share their product experience. The EcoSport line-up will include four trims, giving consumers a choice of three engine options including manual transmission and an automatic transmission option in petrol version.”
In the upcoming 2013 EcoSport, Ford India is expected to incorporate the locally produced 1-liter petrol EcoBoost engine, which will help the auto maker in reducing the amount of tax on the model in the price competitive domestic auto market. Besides the 1.0-liter engine EcoBoost engine, the auto maker is anticipated to introduce the model with 1.5 litre petrol and diesel powertrain options as well.
The Vice President for Marketing at Ford India, Sriram Padmanabhan said, “We will initially import the engines [from Europe], but will in future manufacture them locally.” Reportedly, the company will be manufacturing its upcoming utility vehicle at its factory in Chennai. Interestingly, the domestically produced model equipped with an imported engine will be entitled to a 30 per cent import duty and therefore, producing engine locally will facilitate the company in pricing its SUV right amid the price sensitive Indian buyers.
With plans to launch a new model, Ford India is looking ahead to turn the tides in its favour as the sales of auto maker witnessed a fall of 30 per cent, amounting to 7,253 units during the February 2013. Post launch, the Ford EcoSport will deliver a stiff competition to Renault Duster, Mahindra Quanto and Premier Rio, among others.